Re: What's the standard for non-standard extensions?

Brian Gaines (
Tue, 25 Oct 1994 17:24:19 +0100

In message <m0qyQzC-00001SC@monolith> writes:
> Kee Hinckley writes:
> > I'm generating pages in which I want to store meta information of
> > interest to my HTML editing tools and to some of my server applications.
> >
> > I currently do something like:
> >
> > <!-- metainfo --> html code <!- /metainfo -->
> >
> > That obviously works, but is it necessary?
> I'd say do it this way, because it won't generate errors in 'strict'
> browsers that have the option to spit out warnings about unknown tags,
> ommitted tags, etc. (currently Arena does a great job of this, and
> emacs-w3 does some of it)

It is important that browsers properly ignore tags that they do not
understand. The HTML DTD is extensible with additional tags for purposes
of specialist browsers, e.g. for versioning.

So-called 'strict' checking for unknown tags must always be an option
so that maximum downwards compatibility is maintained.

This is not a question of what extensions become 'standards' but rather
of the importance of downwards compatibility. Documents may well contain
information that is of relevance to the specialiast functionality of some
browsers and irrelevant to others. It is important that the such documents
can be viewed with all browsers.


Brian Gaines Knowledge Science Institute, University of Calgary Calgary, Alberta, Canada T2N 1N4